The Early Medieval Church

The Relationship of Church and State
Lesson 6 30 October 2011

The Feudal System
• The Fall of the Carolingian Empire
– Three Sons: Lothair, Charles the Bald, Louis the Pious – Sets the stage for the Rise of German and French kingdoms

• Feudal System
– Pledge of loyalty between vassal and the lord – Priests are both government agents and agents of the Church

King Dukes Knights Artisan Class

Pope Archbishops Bishops

Parish Priests Laity


The “Two Swords” Doctrine
• Based on Luke 22:38 • Gelasius I (492-496 AD)
– Sacred power to the Pope; secular power to the King

• Effects
– Secular: The King desires to control the Church in his area – Sacred: The Pope meddles in the affairs of the King – Establishes a two-tier justice system
• Ecclesiastical Courts to judge the clergy and determine doctrinal purity • Lay Courts to try persons for offenses against the crown

– Just War Theory
• The Peace of God – agrees to ban private quarrels, to not attack unarmed persons; to protect sacred locations, no pillaging or robbery • The Truce of God – cannot fight from sundown Wednesday to sunup Monday, not to fight on holy days, Church property to be sanctuary, women unharmed • Rise of Chivalry and the Knight’s Code of Conduct • Bans certain weapons as being “un-Christian”

The Cluniac Reforms
• The Pornocracy - 904 to 964 AD
– – – – Pope Controlled (and a part of) the Aristocracy of Rome John XII – the son of John X and his mistress The Practice of Simony A Period of the anti-Popes

• The Monastery of Cluny – located in S. France
– St. Odo – Abbot of the Monastery – Followed the Benedictine Rule

• The Reforms
– New Monastery’s – monks, priors and abbots are ordained, agree to being ruled by the mother monastery – Swear Allegiance to the Pope and not to a Feudal King or lord – Renew the vows of poverty and chastity – put away mistresses – End nepotism and the practice of simony – Establish monastic schools and emphasize Latin – Emphasizes evangelism and missionary work

The Lay Investiture Controversy
• • Pope Gregory VII (Hildebrand) vs. Emperor Henry IV (1073 – 1085 AD) Lay Investiture – give the symbols of office (ring, staff and pallium)
– King wants to “invest” the Bishops within his realm – Pope says that the Bishops are to be invested by him alone

Gregory VII excommunicates Henry
– Impact: Withholds the sacraments except baptism and extreme unction – States the populace does not have to follow the King – Henry relents; does penance at the Canossa in 1077

• • •

Henry fights back at Augsburg
– Gregory run out of Rome and dies in exile in Naples

Thomas Beckett and Henry II (England) – 1109 AD
– “Murder in the Cathedral”

1122 AD – the Concordat of Worms
– Election of Bishops by the Church, but in front of the King – Church “invests” the Bishop – Bishop takes an oath to support the temporal ruler

The Great Schism
• Leo IX vs. The Patriarch Michael of the Eastern Orthodox Church – 1054 AD • Origins of the Dispute
– – – – Church under the Byzantine Emperor Weakened by the continued pressure of Islamic conquests Liturgy and Understanding of the Church Greek not Latin Iconography – use of statues and paintings in worship
• Western Interference in the controversy; East decides to remove statues

– Issues over clergy marriage – Filioque Clause added to the Nicene Creed – Patriarch says that it is heretical because not decided by a Council

• Each Leader excommunicates the other • Splits the Church • “Healed” by agreement on December 7, 1965 (Paul VI and Athenagoras

The Fourth Lateran Council
1215 AD
• The Use of Force to Maintain Doctrinal Purity
– Innocent III (1209 AD) declares a crusade against the Albigenses (a heretical sect) – Practiced a form of Gnosticism – Exterminated by the armies of the French king

• Made an annual confession to the priest by all laymen mandatory • Must attend the Mass at Easter • Declared the doctrine of Transubstantiation
– Set forth by Paschasius Radbertus in the book “Of the Body and Blood of the Lord” in 831 AD – Used to solidify the power of the Pope and clergy

The Zenith of Papal Power
• Innocent III (1161 – 1216 AD)
– Son of a Roman Nobleman; Studied Theology and Law – “The Vicar of Christ” – supreme authority on the Earth – The “Decretals” – The complete statement of canon law that melded Church law with Roman Law – Canon Law vested power in one person

The Rise of National Identity
– France, England and the Holy Roman Empire – Steps into the marriage issue of King Philip Augustus and Agnes – Appoints the Archbishop of Canterbury over objection of King John
• Pays 1000 marks annually and become a vassal to the Pope (Henry VIII ends it)

– France vs. England – France vs. the Holy Roman Empire

Boniface VIII (1294 – 1303) – Unam Sanctum
– – “no salvation outside of the Church”; submission to Pope necessary for salvation Would be repeated in “Quanto Conficiamur” by Pius IX in 1863 Clement V Church under the protection of the French Crown

Babylonian Captivity of the Church (1309 – 1377) – Avignon
– –

• Brown, Colin. “Christianity and Western Thought” vol. 1 • Cairns, Earle E. “Christianity Through the Centuries” • Holmes, George (ed.) “The Oxford History of the Middle Ages” • McGrath, Alister E. “Historical Theology: An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought”

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